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me doing him, not fooling Holly
me doing him, not fooling Holly (20130588)
A little while ago now.... (Anne Jenkins)
Now the day is over . . .
Now the day is over . . . (2013236)
Now the day is over . . . Market Street, Pontypridd - c1910 Moonlight and gaslight - beautifully atmospheric, like a Kincaid Christmas card. (photo: RCT Libraries; bvurb - Gerald Richards)
UFOs over the Cynon Valey
UFOs over the Cynon Valey (2013449)
Mystery history with a local focal: Roswell . . . Area 51 . . . Cynon Valley . . . Most of us are familiar with the strange tales emanating from Roswell and Area 51 in the United States since 1947, but not a lot has been written about the ‘flying saucer’ stories which hit the valley in 1940 and the early 1950s. Here are a few of them: In April 1940, several men waiting for their works bus at the bottom of Cwmdare hill at 6 o’clock in the morning witnessed a ‘brilliant light’ shooting across the sky in a south-westerly direction. Given the hostile military conditions prevalent at the time, the reporter for the Aberdare Leader quickly reassured his readers that it was definitely not an enemy aircraft. It was not until ten years after this sighting (10 June 1950) that a ‘hover-plane’, or helicopter, was first seen flying over the Cynon Valley, introducing residents to the strange and wonderful aerial technology which had developed over the wartime years. But, within five months, things started to take a sinister twist when, on 4 November of that year, reports of ‘flying saucers’ seen at Paignton and on the Gower (Penclawdd), were augmented by sightings of “out of the ordinary” aerial objects that were seen above Brook Street, Aberaman, and in Hirwaun, where two women saw a couple of ‘star-like’ lights with pointed tails that looked like the headlights of a car. On 27 January, 1951, an amber sphere (about ‘twice the size of a football’) was seen in the sky above Mountain Ash by several people. Described as ‘glittering like a diamond ring’, the UFO travelled in an easterly direction for a full two minutes before it eventually went out of sight. One lady, who thought it may have been a fireball, dismissed the idea that it was an airplane because it made no sound. Just after midnight, and almost a fortnight before Christmas in 1952, a ‘sphere of blazing light’ with a cigar-shaped object just beneath it, was observed above Abercynon and heading towards Treharris. And two years later, on 6 November, 1954, a ‘flying cigar - brilliantly illuminated with a yellow light’ was seen flying over North View Terrace. The two witnesses, from Godreaman, described its appearance as being similar to the shape of an electric light bulb; it was moving slowly and silently, and finally disappeared out of sight beyond the mountains above Abercwmboi. On the evening of 13 August, 1955, two revolving silver discs were seen by two ladies in Catherine Street, Aberdare; the ‘saucers’ flitted over the Graig and headed off in the direction of Mardy. It should be remembered that supersonic speeds and space travel were still several years away, although it can be assumed that aeronautical experimentation following the war years would have reached a hiatus by the time these sightings were recorded. Indeed, the Russian Sputnik satellite was in orbit by October 1957. But would that have satisfactorily explained all of the sightings listed here? Perhaps, it would be better to keep an open mind and adopt the Shakespearean attitude that there are more things in heaven and earth, than are dreamt of in our philosophies. (Gerald Richards)
Merry Christmas, Aberaman, 2012
Merry Christmas, Aberaman, 2012 (2013444)
A merry Christmas, Aberaman! Shawls and chapels, the comforters of the valleys. (Gerald Richards)
The Christmas Bus
The Christmas Bus (2013443)
The Council ‘Christmas bus’ which ran during the festive season was that extra touch of magic which added to the growing excitement of every boy and girl (and a lot of adults, too) in the district. This bus celebrated the event in 1959 Always a busy time of the year, as far back as 1912 the Aberdare Leader could report that a total of 6,793 passengers travelled almost 800 miles within the Cynon Valley on Christmas Eve. And think of the poor postman: in 1955 (four years before this particular ‘bus ran the Santa trail) over 100,000 letters were handled by the Aberdare post office on 21 December; by 1963, the number of cards and letters were well in excess of half a million. Mind you, not all of them were destined for Aberaman, but I bet we got our fair share! (RCT Libraries - blurb: Gerald Richards)
A Christmas card from the past
A Christmas card from the past (2013429)
There was a certain familiarity with that image; a feeling that I had seen it before somewhere . . . I looked at the little heart-brooch photo soldiers gave their loved ones during the war, and there he was. My father! He worked in Aberaman Colliery, but enlisted in 1939. He was killed in action in August 1944. He was 24 years old. In its obituary of him, the Aberdare Leader added: ‘He was liked and respected by all who knew him, and was a prominent member of the Y.M.C.A., Aberaman.’ Thanks for the card, Dad – and Merry Christmas! (Gerald Richards)
YMCA, Aberaman
YMCA, Aberaman (2013428)
A CHRISTMAS CARD FROM GASWORKS ROAD . . . I was looking at this 1930s photograph in the RCT Libraries archive showing a bunch of lads in the YMCA, Gasworks Road (opposite George Street) . . . It’s a family sort of photo, and everyone wants to be in it, because they all feel – well – like they all sort of belong, if you know what I mean? They’re all bunched around the snooker table, and you’ve got these guys at either end angling the light-shades on the group to give maximum light – A quick look-see and then I’m off looking through the other photos – and then I remember the last kid on the right who’s pushing forward a bit to get in on the act. (RCT Libraries)
Christmas decorating
Christmas decorating (20120216)
Christmas decorating at Abercwmboi Communities First (ACF)